QOTD: A Weirdo, Just Like Me?

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy
qotd a weirdo just like me

We’re an odd bunch around here, as I’m sure you’ll agree. Some of the B&B are pretty far into the field as well. It what makes this place tick, as it has for years.

The tastes of your authors run the gamut, from weird old hatchbacks to strange sedans. Any mention of Oldsmobile causes heart palpitations in more than a few names listed on our masthead.

What machine causes you to, despite perplexed looks from your companions, to break out the camera on your smartphone? For me, it was a GM A-Body just two days ago.

You never see these things anymore, at least here where the Rust Monster never sleeps. Sure, GM built the Buick Century until 1996 but — despite my chronologically-inhibited mind — that was still 22 years ago. Yikes! And it should be noted the Pontiac 6000 disappeared five years prior to that.

I can’t be the only one who holds an affinity for odd cars. Can I? Hello? Where’d everybody go?

The semi-regular appearance of a very clean, final model year K-Car in our town also reliably causes my head to swivel as if a Ferrari F40 being driven by Steven Tyler has just passed by. I cannot explain this, other than to note the importance of the K as it relates to the dustbin of automotive history. After seeing the thing, I also spend an inordinate amount of time wondering if it has those map lights that swing and swivel out of the sun visors.

Yes, I absolutely snapped a photograph of that Goolie (6000LE) as it clanked its way out of the supermarket parking lot. Questions were asked by my companions as to why I was wasting digital real estate on what — to most — is a car that was fit for the derby ten years ago. They’re just lucky it wasn’t an STE AWD. I’d have chased that sucker all day.

What car do you stop and take a picture of (or crane your neck to see) that mystifies your friends and family?

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  • Gearhead77 Gearhead77 on Oct 25, 2018

    Saultigh is exactly right. I expect someone to care for an (insert exotic) here. Or even a high-end but otherwise normal car ( Corvette, Mustang, CTS-V,etc.) But a pristine K-car, Ford Escort, 1st gen Taurus, Chevy Celebrity or anything odd that has survived longer than a decade and outlived 95% of it line mates is always a head turner. Especially since for me in the rust belt, most imports from the 90's or earlier rusted out long ago. My head is on a swivel the further south I go! My perpetual hunt for a four-place drop top found me a 1997 Toyota Paseo Convertible with 57k and all original, very clean. The dealer is asking 5k for it and while that's a bit much, I don't remember the last time I saw one ever. Production numbers were low and it was a one year only thing in 97. The want is strong for this little "Super Red" car with the funky graphic seats and floormats. 95hp and a 4 spd auto means you'll win no races, but there's non-convertible ones on AT with 150k-200k on them too. A unicorn from "peak Toyota"? Gimme. (https://www.tedsautos.com/) If it survives, I love it. Some people want to take in all the stray animals they see. I want to take in all the unloved cars I've always wanted on the 3rd rate BHPH lots and craigslist ads.

    • DweezilSFV DweezilSFV on Oct 30, 2018

      Same here. There was an 82 Citation 5 door in Marana on CR I even posted on my FB feed. 80,000 some odd miles [looked more like 180,000]. The 86 Calais in my driveway will have to give me the Isle Of Lost Cars Iron Duke fix, alas.

  • DweezilSFV DweezilSFV on Oct 30, 2018

    GM N,A or X Body, Chrysler first Gen Mini Van. K Cars. Saw an 86 Celebrity wagon I wanted to follow just yesterday.

  • Jim Bonham Full EVs are not for everyone, they cannot meet all needs. Hybrids do a much better job of providing the benefits of EVs without most of the drawbacks. I have a hybrid sedan with plenty of room, plus all the bells and whistles. It has 360 hp, AWD, does 0-60 in just over 5 sec.(the instant torque is a real benefit), and I get 29 mpg, average. NOT driven lightly. I bought it used for $25k.Sure, it's a little heavier because of the battery, motor, etc., but not nearly as much as a full EV. The battery is smaller/lighter/cheaper and both the alternator and starter motor are eliminated since the motor assumes those functions. It's cool to watch the charge guage show I'm getting energy back when coasting and/or braking. It's even cooler to drive around part of the time on battery only. It really comes in handy in traffic since the engine turns off and you don't waste fuel idling. With the adaptive cruise control you just let the car slowly inch along by itself.I only wish it were a Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV). Then, I'd have A LOT more EV-only range, along with even more of that instant torque. The battery would be bigger, but still a fraction of the size of a full EV. I could easily go weeks without using much, if any gas (depending upon my commute) IF I plug it in every night. But I don't have to. The gas engine will charge the battery whenever it's needed.It's just not as efficient a way to do it.Electric companies offer special rates for both EVs and PHEVs which lower your operating cost compared to gasoline. They'll even give you a rebate to offset the cost of installing a home charger. You can still get federal (up to $7,500, plus some state) tax credits for PHEVs.What's not to like? My next daily driver will be a PHEV of some kind. Probably a performance-oriented one like the new Dodge Hornet or one of the German Hybrid SUVs. All the benefits, sound, feel, etc., of a gas vehicle along with some electric assist to improve fuel economy, performance, and drivability. None of the inherent EV issues of cost, range anxiety, long charging times, poor charger availability, grid capacity issues, etc. I think most people will eventually catch on to this and go PHEV instead of going full EV. Synthetic, carbon-neutral eFuels, hydrogen engines, and other things will also prevent full EVs from being 100% of the fleet, regardless of what the politicians say. PHEVs can be as "clean" (overall) as full EVs with the right fuels. They're also cheaper, and far more practical, for most people. They can do it all, EVs can't.
  • Ron rufo there is in WaSHINGTON STATE
  • ToolGuy @Chris, your photography rocks.
  • ToolGuy No War for Oli.If you have not ever held a piece of structural honeycomb (composite sandwich) in your own hands, try it.
  • ToolGuy You make them sound like criminals.
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